Detroit Tigers: World Series Predictions
We all know how the 2015 season ended and we are all hoping for something significantly better for 2016. I am still holding fast to my special Christmas tree ornament telling Santa that all I want for Christmas is for the Detroit Tigers to win the World Series. But, if David Schoenfield from ESPN has anything to say about, another Christmas will pass without my one wish being granted.
According to Schoenfield’s predictions for 2016, he ranks our Detroit Tigers 20th in the MLB. His reasoning was what we all know: the starting pitching allowed too many runs, even when Price was on the mound. The Tigers currently have many of the same pitchers as they did in the previous season, but they will be without Alfredo Simon. And, we are uncertain about who will fill that empty spot and the other one or two that need to be filled.
Jul 5, 2015; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers right fielder J.D. Martinez (28) celebrates after hitting a home run in the sixth inning against the Toronto Blue Jays at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
While Schoenfield did have his statistics correct, he did not share the fact that Anibal Sanchez was injured and so was Justin Verlander for a significant part of the season. While Verlander struggled at first, he did finish the season on a high note when he actually hit 100 mph on his fastball. The story on Sanchez has yet to be told; but when he is healthy, we know what he can do. With Alfredo Simon gone and the possibility of a healthy Shane Greene and Daniel Norris in the mix, the current pitching staff has the potential to deliver more than a 20-spot in 2016. Add to that the possibility that Al Avila could add someone like Jordan Zimmerman, Jeff Samardzija, or even Doug Fister to the rotation.
If Avila can get his hands on bullpen pitchers who start and remain reliable throughout the season, there is no doubt that 20th place will be too low for the Tigers. No other team in the MLB has Miguel Cabrera, J.D. Martinez, and Victor Martinez. As long as they can remain healthy, the lineup is one of the best. It is important to remember that every single team has the potential for injuries and last year’s bad luck fell in Detroit.
There are plenty of aggressive and hungry Detroit Tigers who want to see the post-season. They will most likely have to fight against the new powerhouses in Kansas City, Queens, Toronto, and Chicago, as well as the perennial favorites in St. Louis, Los Angeles, and Boston. It is only November 6 and free agents have not even been signed yet. A lot can change in a few short hours. I might be a bit too hopeful, but every year (except that one year I like to forget about) could be a World Series year for the Tigers.